A game animal rarely offers the ideal target: poised broadside, within range, in the clear, and looking the other way. Therefore, you’ll need to practice to make more challenging shots. You also must learn to seize just the right moment to shoot. To take your best shot when an animal approaches:
- Control your desire to move immediately into shooting position.
- Wait for the right moment.
- Compare the eyes of the approaching animal to sweeping beams of light, such as the headlights of a car. Don’t move until those “headlight beams” are pointed well away from you or until they pass behind screening brush or trees.
- Make your move to shoulder your crossbow, and then wait until the animal stops near your pre-selected “pick-off” spot. (If you can’t shoulder your crossbow without exposing yourself to the animal, wait motionless until the animal has passed by before making your move into the shooting position.)
- Focus on the aiming spot over the animal’s vital area.
- Relax, ease off the safety, and take the shot.
- Continue to aim after the shot until you see the arrow hit the target. “Peaking” or dropping your arm holding your crossbow can cause erratic arrow flight and affect the point of impact.